Your wedding day should be all about you two. It’s a day that not only should reflect your unique style & personalities, but also a day where you can truly relax and enjoy all the special moments. The team that puts it together is your key to a beautiful day that is relaxing, enjoyable, and all about YOU! There is a LOT that goes into choosing each individual vendor, but these guiding principles will help you select a team that fits your unique needs.
You probably have some wedding vendors that you’re already excited about, and other categories in which you have no clue where to even start looking. Regardless of how confident you are about hiring the person, you definitely want to have a real conversation before you book them – either in person or on the phone. Hearing them speak and talk about their work will sometimes seal the deal, and other times be a dealbreaker. Specific things to look for: is the vendor interested in your specific needs, or does he/she assert to know the “best” way to do things without hearing your opinion? Is he/she excited to get to know you personally, or does the meeting feel cold? And lastly – do you like him/her? It sounds silly, but there are some really talented vendors that you might just not like as a person. If that’s the case, it’s 100% OK to walk away!
Having a conversation never means that you have to book them, so don’t feel guilty saying no afterwards if something didn’t feel right!
Even though you’re hiring separate companies, your vendors will work together on the day of the wedding. Creating a flawless wedding day is 100% a team effort. Unfortunately, there are vendors out there (some of them are very accomplished!) that are not team players. Inflexibility or a negative attitude towards other vendors (I can’t tell you how many couples have complained of DJs sarcastically saying, “your photographer probably wants to do it this way.”) is a red flag that the vendor is not a team player.
A good litmus test for this is simply telling the vendor about your priorities – particularly priorities that do not pertain to them. For example, you might tell a caterer, “we really would like our photographer to be served dinner when we’re served, so that they don’t miss anything important later on.” If the caterer puts up a fight or suggests that vendors are “always” served after guests, this is a sign that he/she is very set in a specific way of doing things and will likely not be a team player. (For the record, all the best caterers know to serve their vendors when the bride & groom are eating!).
You can always ask your other vendors what they think about the company or individual. Often times, certain vendors will have gained a reputation – positive or negative – which will help shed light on what they are really like to work with! I have a trusted list of recommended vendors, but I also have worked with many others whom vary widely in positive or negative experiences. Other vendors will give you their honest opinion. They are, after all, going to have to work with that vendor, too!
Wedding planners are often seen as one of those “optional” wedding vendors. Not every couple chooses to have one, and many couples utilize on-site coordinators instead. I will be the first person to tell you that hiring a wedding planner is one of the BEST decisions you can make!
Honestly, I could write an entire article on just this topic alone! To put it concisely: a great wedding planner will bring your vision to life without any stress on you. Many couples think that if they’re Type A, organized and have good taste, they can do it all on their own. They falsely believe that a planner dreams up the style and ideas for the day. While you may be able to do a lot of organizing and detail-creation on your own, don’t forget that you’re also the person being celebrated! There are so many things you simply won’t be able to do on your wedding day. Also, a wedding planner has access to other vendors (rental companies, wholesale decor, dinner & dessert specialists, etc.) that are either more expensive or entirely inaccessible to non-planners. An excellent wedding planner will help guide and direct your vision to make it a cohesive, beautiful and totally stress-free event.
I’ve learned how important wedding planners are entirely due to my couples. The difference between the couples who do & don’t have a planner is like night and day. Couples with a planner are rarely, if ever, stressed about anything. Their wedding days are care-free and absolutely gorgeous. Things go according to plan. Everything looks flawless. It sounds crazy, but even as a guest, I can tell if a couple has hired a planner within the first 5 minutes of arriving!
We have a fantastic list of recommended wedding planners, so be sure to check out the vendor list for suggestions!
A positive review from a friend can go really far, but just because she loved them doesn’t mean you will, too. It’s all about compatibility. Do you have similar taste to your friend? Did she have a wedding you admired? Do you have the same temperament or similar personalities? While recommendations from a friend can be a huge advantage, it’s still so important to have that initial phone call to see if you feel the same.
Of equal importance to your friend’s referrals are other couple’s opinions of the vendor. Do a quick search online – Google, WeddingWire & The Knot are all pretty reliable sources for reviews. You can also ask your vendor for the names & contact info of other couples who worked with him/her. You’ll be getting the names of some of that vendor’s favorite clients, so if you don’t hear absolutely fantastic reviews, proceed with caution!
Choosing vendors is a difficult task, which is why I provide a list of recommended vendors to all my couples! If you haven’t already seen in, let me know and I’ll send it your way!
Romantic with moody fall vibes and jewel tones, this wedding was cozy and so beautifully designed.
La Vie En Rose photographs their 100th wedding at an all-time favorite wedding venue, Rockhouse Hotel.
Mixing sophisticated style with family traditions and meaningful moments - our kind of DC wedding!
Washington, DC | Naples, FL | Destination
La Vie En Rose is a wedding photography and videography studio for couples who want photos that live in the moment with them. They are based in Washington, DC and Naples, FL and are available for travel worldwide.